Empire State: A Love Story (or Not)

( 5 )

Overview

Jimmy is a stereotypical geek who works at the library in Oakland, California, and is trapped in his own torpidity. Sara is his best friend, but she wants to get a life (translation: an apartment in Brooklyn and a publishing internship). When Sara moves to New York City, Jimmy is rattled. Then lonely. Then desperate. He screws up his courage, writes Sara a letter about his true feelings, and asks her to meet him at the top of the Empire State Building (a nod to their ongoing ...

See more details below
Hardcover
$13.92
BN.com price
(Save 22%)$17.95 List Price

Pick Up In Store

Reserve and pick up in 60 minutes at your local store

Other sellers (Hardcover)
  • All (45) from $1.99   
  • New (20) from $2.71   
  • Used (25) from $1.99   
Empire State: A Love Story (or Not)

Available on NOOK devices and apps  
  • NOOK Devices
  • NOOK HD/HD+ Tablet
  • NOOK
  • NOOK Color
  • NOOK Tablet
  • Tablet/Phone
  • NOOK for Windows 8 Tablet
  • NOOK for iOS
  • NOOK for Android
  • NOOK Kids for iPad
  • PC/Mac
  • NOOK for Windows 8
  • NOOK for PC
  • NOOK for Mac
  • NOOK Study

Want a NOOK? Explore Now

NOOK Book (eBook)
$10.49
BN.com price
(Save 41%)$17.95 List Price

Overview

Jimmy is a stereotypical geek who works at the library in Oakland, California, and is trapped in his own torpidity. Sara is his best friend, but she wants to get a life (translation: an apartment in Brooklyn and a publishing internship). When Sara moves to New York City, Jimmy is rattled. Then lonely. Then desperate. He screws up his courage, writes Sara a letter about his true feelings, and asks her to meet him at the top of the Empire State Building (a nod to their ongoing debate about Sleepless in Seattle). 

Jimmy's cross-country bus trip to Manhattan is as hapless and funny as Jimmy himself. When he arrives in the city he's thought of as "a festering hellhole," he's surprised by how exciting he finds New York, and how heartbreaking—he discovers Sara has a boyfriend! 

Jason Shiga's bold visual storytelling, sly pokes at popular culture, and subtle text work together seamlessly in Empire State, creating a quirky graphic novel comedy about the vagaries of love and friendship.

Praise for Empire State:

"He [Shiga] displays a wicked sense of comic timing." 
-Publishers Weekly 

"Empire State: A Love Story (Or Not) is funny, sweet, geeky and affecting, and definitely worth a read." 
-Wired.com 

"Shiga's illustrations . . . are unique and endearing, and his images of NYC are instantly recognizable."
 -am New York 

"If Woody Allen grew up in Oakland rather than Manhattan, he'd most likely see the world, and especially New York City, as Jason Shiga does in Empire State." -Big Think.com

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble

Twentysomething Jimmy lives with his parents, works in the Oakland Public Library and displays all the telltale signs of geekdom. When his heartthrob Sara moves to New York, he suddenly senses a Grand Canyon of vacancy in his life. Acting impulsively and stereotypically, he writes her a desperate letter, proposing to meet her, yes, on top of the Empire State Building. From that emotional plunge, Jimmy's story takes numerous strange turns and detours, all of which draw us closer to this unlikely hero of Jason Stiga's graphic novel. Editor's recommendation.

Publishers Weekly
Jimmy's first crush/best friend Sara has moved to New York to encounter the wider world. So Jimmy, a socially awkward man-child who likes reading hard sci-fi (the kind with rocket ships) and has no idea what a latte is, embarks on a perilous bus trip from his home in Oakland to Brooklyn to profess his love to her. He soon learns that the only thing worse than sharing a small bus with random ex-cons comparing notes on their prison experiences is crashing on a couch in a small Brooklyn apartment with Sara and her new boyfriend, Mark. Sara and Mark do their best to welcome Jimmy to the grown-up world, showing him different parts of the city and trying to broaden his limited horizons, but there's a real question as to whether their gentle coaching will take. Shiga (Meanwhile, Double Happiness) walks a fine line between sappy rom-com and maudlin love-lost tale, but largely succeeds in maintaining a balanced middle. He's aided by a crude yet geometric penciling style that draws the reader very effectively into Jimmy's point of view. He also displays a wicked sense of comic timing, which is equally effective at portraying awkward pauses and slapstick physicality. (May)
School Library Journal
Gr 9 Up—Jimmy, an Asian man, and Sara, a Jewish woman, are best friends. They live in Oakland, but Sara dreams of working in the publishing industry and moves to New York. They have a long-distance friendship at first, but when Sara sends him a tote bag from the Strand bookstore, Jimmy decides to travel across the country to see her again. He has romantic ideas about Sara, and about New York itself. He wants to meet her at the top of the Empire State Building at sunset, just like in Sleepless in Seattle. He takes a bus rather than a plane because he wants to see more of the country, but the trip and the destination don't turn out to be what he expected. At first Jimmy is a young man who signs his paychecks over to his mother, who then gives him an allowance. He is happy with his library job, and happy in Oakland. But Sara inspires him to be brave, and to make choices he never would have made before. Shiga uses a simple, cartoon style to illustrate this book. The story is alternately saturated in red and blue tones that don't make sense at first, but readers will soon realize that the colors of the pages indicate chronological shifts in the story. This is a semiautobiographical book that was inspired by a cross-country Greyhound bus trip, and it will be most appreciated by readers who are ready to savor this quietly emotional journey.—Andrea Lipinski, New York Public Library
Children's Literature - Michael Jung PhD
Inspired by a real-life Greyhound bus trip, this is the story of Jimmy, a twenty-something library worker who feels his comfortable but boring life grow empty when his best friend Sara moves to New York to pursue a publishing career. Deciding he's been in love with Sara for years, Jimmy sends her a love letter and takes a bus to New York, hoping to find the sort of happy ending he's seen in movies like Sleepless in Seattle. But real life isn't anything like the movies, and soon Jimmy must contend with creepy bus travelers, weird New Yorkers, and a slow mail delivery service. Will Jimmy still reach his happy ending? Or will his impromptu trip reveal unexpected truths about that strange place between love and friendship? While drawn in the same cartoonish style as Shiga's celebrated fantasy Meanwhile, this is a vastly more mature work that manages to poke fun at romantic illusions without completely puncturing them. Readers will be able to sympathize with Jimmy as he learns to enjoy the wonders of the big city even as he loses some of his ideals. Shiga's fans will not be disappointed. Reviewer: Michael Jung, PhD
VOYA - Jamie Hansen
Naive, socially inept Jimmy drifts through a geek's life in Oakland, California: he works at a dead-end job in a library, likes science fiction (the kind with a rocket ship on the cover), and thinks he is a computer programmer. His best friend and secret crush, outspoken, tough-minded Sara, is planning a life—or at least her version of one—involving an efficiency apartment in Brooklyn and an internship at a publishing company. When Sara moves to New York to fulfill her dream, Jimmy breaks free of his inertia, embarking on a hellish cross-country bus ride, imagining a joyous lovers' reunion in which both profess their love. As is often the case, however, life has other plans for Jimmy and Sara, including a few unwelcome surprises. Eisner Award—winning graphic novelist Shiga has created a slyly humorous and wistful postmodern tale of unrequited love and contemporary culture. His stocky, minimalist figures with their bulbous eyes are deceptively simple but remarkably expressive. He places them against a variety of simply drawn but recognizable Oakland and New York backdrops of bus stations, suburban streets, parks, and cityscapes. The alert reader will soon realize that the seemingly random use of either red or blue tones in various parts of the story reveals the sequence of events in the nonlinear plot. Older teens who like quirky and offbeat graphic novels, especially coming-of-age stories, will identify with this account of one innocent pilgrim's melancholy progress. Reviewer: Jamie Hansen
School Library Journal
Gr 9 Up—Jimmy, an Asian man, and Sara, a Jewish woman, are best friends. They live in Oakland, but Sara dreams of working in the publishing industry and moves to New York. They have a long-distance friendship at first, but when Sara sends him a tote bag from the Strand bookstore, Jimmy decides to travel across the country to see her again. He has romantic ideas about Sara, and about New York itself. He wants to meet her at the top of the Empire State Building at sunset, just like in Sleepless in Seattle. He takes a bus rather than a plane because he wants to see more of the country, but the trip and the destination don't turn out to be what he expected. At first Jimmy is a young man who signs his paychecks over to his mother, who then gives him an allowance. He is happy with his library job, and happy in Oakland. But Sara inspires him to be brave, and to make choices he never would have made before. Shiga uses a simple, cartoon style to illustrate this book. The story is alternately saturated in red and blue tones that don't make sense at first, but readers will soon realize that the colors of the pages indicate chronological shifts in the story. This is a semiautobiographical book that was inspired by a cross-country Greyhound bus trip, and it will be most appreciated by readers who are ready to savor this quietly emotional journey.—Andrea Lipinski, New York Public Library
Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780810997479
  • Publisher: Abrams, Harry N., Inc.
  • Publication date: 5/1/2011
  • Pages: 144
  • Sales rank: 936,331
  • Product dimensions: 8.08 (w) x 6.56 (h) x 0.85 (d)

Meet the Author

Jason Shiga is the creator of the bestselling graphic novel Meanwhile. Shiga won the 2003 Eisner Award for Talent Deserving of Wider Recognition. He lives in Oakland, California.

Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 3
( 5 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(0)

4 Star

(2)

3 Star

(1)

2 Star

(1)

1 Star

(1)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously
Sort by: Showing all of 5 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 19, 2011

    Fantastic

    This is a great graphic novel by a talenet story teller. His style is distinct and wonderful. The story is well told and definately worth reading. Check it out, you wont be sorry

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 5, 2014

    ?????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????

    ???????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 25, 2013

    Loved the book, hate the format

    This is a great story. Unfortunately the formatting of the book in its electronic form is horrible. Instead of using the typically good Nook Comic View this is presented in un-zoomable image forms. This makes the text extremely small and hard to read.

    Buy this book in hard copy and read the story. But don't buy this electronically unless they fix te formatting.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 18, 2011

    Book does not work - do not buy this

    tried to purchase this and it only downloaded 8 pages. could only look at 3 pages of the none of which were text. called B & N and there only solution was a refund(they could not get it to work either)

    0 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 22, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing all of 5 Customer Reviews

If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
Why is this product inappropriate?
Comments (optional)